Fireball – The Inferno Within

June 8, 2017

There are very few countries which emanate threats globally, with China being one of them. Fireball is a legitimate software since it is digitally signed by the very organization which has developed it, however it also bundles up malicious binaries and browser extensions.

Traditionally, ad-wares were never considered to be malicious, since their sole intention was to redirect traffic and bombard the user with advertisements, and furthermore, these ad-wares were always bundled with other legitimate software, so that unsuspecting users ended up installing them too. Besides, there exists Pay-Per-Install (PPI) revenue sharing model between the developers and the bundled software providers. Due to the fact that they piggyback on a popularity of legitimate software, this association is profitable for all the stakeholders.

Fireball, not just installs an ad-ware, but also manipulates the victims default browser search engine to fake ones, which in turn redirect the search query to Yahoo.com or Google.com. However, these fake search engines do a lot more than simple redirect, they track the users and they can spy on their victims too by dropping and executing malwares.

The concern around Fireball is that the adware it installs after downloaded to a device, is capable of installing malwares using backdoor. This in turn could be used by cyber criminals to exploit and use to push malicious codes or exploits to create large scale attacks or disruptions. Though adware installation by various software download applications are seen as an accepted practice by the end-users, however the Fireball issue could be different than what meets the eye, which is a huge concern with its largest install base of more than 250 million devices worldwide.

eScan’s Advisory suggests the below precautions to be implemented for such attacks in the ever growing complex cyber threat landscape:

  • eScan recommends using an adware scanner to scan if there is anything wrong with the browser
  • Once you found the adware in the system, go to Programs and Features list in the Control panel of Windows OS to uninstall the program
  • MacOS users should user finder to locate and uninstall the application. After that empty the trash to delete the compromised file
  • Go to your browsers and explore tools and extensions to uninstall anything suspicious
  • Do a regular check for any unauthorized or suspicious browser extensions and plug-ins to make sure your homepage and search engine are the ones that you have set
  • Always opt for custom installation and then de-select anything that is unnecessary or unfamiliar

The information provided above will help you to protect your system from being victim of Fireball malware.


Mr. Govind Rammurthy receives the coveted “Top Rated CEO” by Owler

June 6, 2017

MUMBAI, India – June 6, 2017 – Mr Govind Rammurthy, CEO & MD, eScan has been accorded with the “Top Rated CEO” by Owler amongst select 1000 peers worldwide. Owler, one of the fastest growing aggregators of corporate news and business insights worldwide has initiated the rating of business leadership through evaluation of 167, 000 business leaders globally across industry verticals.

Owler is one of the world’s largest community-based business insights research platform that captures the business insights from organizations globally. This is an initiative by Owler to honor the top rated CEOs based on feedbacks from the members of the Owler community worldwide. The Owler community has collectively contributed more than a quarter million ratings this year. Owler analyzed those ratings, and selected the top 1,000 leaders as the “Top rated CEO” from over 167,000 CEOs surveyed by Owler from across 50 cities and 25 industries worldwide. The ratings were based on various criteria.

Commenting on the recognition by Owler, Mr Govind Rammurthy, CEO & MD of eScan, said, “It is been a humbling experience to be recognized as a Top Rated CEO by Owler. It puts an onus on us to strive hard and excel in our commitment towards providing world-class products and solutions, apart from strengthening our seamless support & services for our valued partners, customers and end users.

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About eScan

eScan is an ISO (27001) certified pure play enterprise security solution company with over 2 decades of expertise in developing IT security solutions. eScan today has a presence in 12 countries through its offices and subsidiaries. It also boasts of a robust channel partner network of more than 50, 000 partners spread across 190 countries worldwide. It is trusted by more than 6,500 enterprise and corporate users spread across various industry segments such as Government, BFSI, Education, Defense, Telecom, IT & ITeS, Infrastructure, Hospitality, and Healthcare worldwide.

It is powered by some of the latest and innovative technologies, such as Proactive Behavioral Analysis Engine (PBAE) Technology, MicroWorld Winsock Layer (MWL) Technology, Domain & IP Reputation Check (DIRC) Technology, Non-Intrusive Learning Pattern (NILP) Technology, and sophisticated Anti-Virus Heuristic Algorithms that not only provide protection from current threats, but also provides proactive protection against the ever-evolving cyber threats. eScan provides 24×7 free remote support facility to help its esteemed users to provide real-time solutions for security related issues. For more information, visit www.escanav.com


eScan observes a threat in using free Wi-Fi service provided by RailWire

May 23, 2017

The smart city dream is making everyone enthusiastic. However, this comes with security breaches and malware attacks that can have a detrimental effect on the entire nation. Public Wi-Fi networks are not very safe as they may seem. Even if they have a security password or OTP, there is sharing of data which is constantly happening via these platforms. This means your data is at risk and you may become an easy target to cybercrime.

eScan 2

Due to the mayhem caused by WannaCry Ransomware, we saw a surge and emergence of Ransomware as the top-most attack vectors in the threat landscape. According to the statistics made available, India was one of the top most affected countries in the world.

Moreover, based on the information collected from our telemetry servers, we observe that the most infected state within India was Madhya Pradesh with 32.63%, followed by Maharashtra at 18.84% with Delhi coming in at number three position with 8.76%.

eScan

There are numerous ISPs operating within India, and Google’s Railwire, the free Wi-Fi service launched by Railtel, is one of them. It was observed to be the top-most network where WannaCry and other Ransomware have been detected within India is the RailTel with 32.14% of the entire share.

Based on the figures, we can gauge the popularity of this Free Wi-Fi Service and also the density of population which can get affected. We have every reason to believe that majority of the Ransomware attacks which happened during the last week, within India, would have been averted had Railtel implemented the stop-gap measure of blocking SMB traffic.

While the Government is installing free Wi-Fi spots at various spots all over India, there is need to validate the internal security of these networks and there is also a need to ensure that all the consumers who are using RailTel’s free Wi-Fi service should do so with some caution. Moreover caution is to be exercised whenever using any free Wi-Fi service.

We, at eScan, believe that it is our duty to be proactive in alerting the users about the potential attacks, which will help them to take necessary precautions. Sharing out statistics is one such aspect. Here are some of the tips to stay safe from Ransomware, phishing, etc. while using open Wi-Fi at public places:

  • Avoid doing financial transactions like online shopping, banking etc. while using public Wi-Fi networks
  • Do not share any confidential/personal information via public Wi-Fi
  • Use Virtual Private Network (VPN) Apps on your device to keep data secure
  • Do not let the device to connect automatically to public Wi-Fi Turn off file sharing while using Wi-Fi
  • Connecting to unsecure networks can leave your device vulnerable
  • Protect your system with Security Suite, which not just blocks malicious traffic but would also protect your system harmful activity

eScan Decimates Ransomware Hoax News

May 17, 2017

More than the actual attack of the WannaCry Ransomware, which held to ransom millions of computers and businesses worldwide demanding ransom to be paid in bitcoins worth $300 to unlock the data, it is the hoax now floating around social media to WhatsApp creating more panic among unaware users. The hoax messages range from not to use shopping sites, online banking to using ATMs as possible traps of the ransomware. eScan research team unravels the truth behind these hoax messages to bring you the truth behind the messages.
Here are some of the clarifications to ensure you do not fall prey to these texts:

  • RBI orders Shutdown of ATMs until they are patched and safe.
    • Status: Hoax
    • RBI has issued clarification that they haven’t issued such orders.
  • Avoid using ATMs and Do not do any online transaction
    • Status: Hoax
    • Any computer system infected with Ransomware would display the message that it has been infected.
  • Don’t do any online transaction. Don’t open any Shopping cart.
    • Status: Hoax
    • Webserver infected with Ransomware would simply be not able to serve the pages. Shopping carts do not store Ransomware.

However, while browsing and downloading software make sure that these executable are scanned by an antivirus.

  • Except Africa all countries IT companies are hacked.
    • Status: Hoax
    • No explanations required cause its 100% fake news. Such events when IT organizations get hacked are published all over the internet, TV channels etc. These news pieces aren’t just limited to your limited group of friends.
  • Dance of the Hillary video
    • Status: Hoax.
    • There is no such video existing

We even received an advisory in our inbox which says:

  • Power off smart TVs, tablets, and every other smart device.
  • Turn off Bluetooth, WiFi, tethering (also known as Hotspot) on your mobile phones.
  • Switch off your servers (or any other computers that you may leave on 24×7.
  • Disconnect LAN (network, CAT6, CAT5) cable plugging computers or laptops in the network. If it is a laptop, it may have a physical slide switch or button press to switch off WiFi card inside the laptop – Switch That Off.
  • if possible, wait for news from eastern world
    • Status: Hoax
    • This simply means that we should lead the life of an ascetic.

Keep the Antivirus Software active & updated on all your devices:

Status: 100% True.

  • Preferably buy a good antivirus, keep it updated, keep your operating system updated, take precautions, never divulge your personal information, are some of the things one should remember.
  • Keep all your important data in back up (if your system has an auto back option available, keep it as auto enabled)

More than 70 Countries Affected by WannaCry Ransomware – eScan Customers are protected

May 15, 2017

WannaCry is also known as WannaCrypt WanaCrypt0r 2.0, Wanna Decryptor has affected more than 70 countries in an unprecedented attack which was launched on 12th May 2017.

Very recently Shadow brokers had leaked the US Spy agencies hacking tools and vulnerabilities and one of them was Eternal Blue exploit which relied on a SMB Exploit to hack into other connected / networked PCs in a network.

It is a common knowledge that when vulnerabilities exist and patches are made available, it is the onus of the Security Administrators to patch up the systems under their control. Microsoft has released the patch MS17-010 way back on 14th March 2017 to address this security threat and it has been proved beyond doubt that Security Administrators and the entire process of reviewing the laid down procedures for ensuring patch management has taken a severe beating.

eScan has been proactively protecting its customers from WannaCry Ransomware attacks using its in-house developed PBAE Technology. Moreover all of eScan products have critical patch management which implements the critical security patches; MS17-010 has been provided as an update globally. As a special one-off case, Microsoft has also released the update for XP and 2003 operating systems.

Also, it has been mentioned in news bulletins about the halt of this Ransomware because of a kill switch, there have also been unconfirmed reports about new variants, which have been released by passing this check.

Precautions:

  • Download and implement MS17-010 patch, which can be found over here https://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/security/ms17-010.aspx
  • Block executable files from being transmitted via eMails.
  • Isolate the affected system from your Network.
  • Restore the encrypted files from the backup or from system restore point (if enabled).
  • Install and Configure eScan with all security modules active
    • eScan Real Time Monitoring
    • eScan Proactive protection
    • eScan Firewall IDS/IPS Intrusion prevention
  • Don’t enable macros in documents received as attachments via email.
  • Do not open attachments if received from unsolicited source.
  • Deploy and maintain a backup solution.
  • And last, but most important, protection of Mail server at Gateway Level with Mailscan to prevent delivering of such suspicious emails

The information provided above will help you to protect your system from being victim of Ransomware.


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